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As of 2013 we no longer sell breeding stock piglets.

 

    

What is a Red Wattle Hog? 

Red Wattle hogs are a breed of hog that is named for both its color and its distinctive "wattles" that hang from either side of their necks (similar to wattles in some goat breeds). They are a good sized hog with mature weights ranging from an average of 600-800 lbs up to some giants in the past that were reported to  weigh close to a ton!!  Red Wattles are gentle animals that are easy to handle and seem to really enjoy human contact, company and attention. The sows are good mothers that typically produce litters of 10-15 piglets.

 No one is exactly sure where the Red Wattle hog came from  but there are a few commonly repeated theories.  One  theory (unproven) is that the animals arrived on a boat from New Caladonia, shipped here by a big game hunter who lived in Texas. What is known for sure is that a Texan by the name of H.C. Wenglar caught some wild hogs that were red and had wattles. These were bred to his farm hogs which produced the first domestic Red Wattle hogs. Over the years with careful breeding, Mr. Wenglar selected for specific traits in his stock and developed the Wenglar Red Waddle Hog.  Other lines of Red Wattle hogs were developed on other Texan ranches. When hog farming fell on hard times in recent years, the number of Red Wattle hogs plummeted. They were never a high number breed with only 272 registered breeding animals in 1990. By 1999, a scant 42 breeding animals were owned by a even scantier 6 breeders.  Now in 2010 the ALBC is maintaining the registration books for the Red Wattle hogs and the renewed interested in heritage breeds known for their excellent meat is helping the breed to make a comeback.

  

Why Red Wattle Hogs ?  

Meat quality was tops on our list for what we wanted in a hog. The Red Wattle is fast gaining a reputation with top chefs and food critics for its tasty, top quality meat. Red Wattle hogs have great marbling and outstanding flavor. Red Wattle hogs are listed with Slow Foods USA on their "Ark of Taste"  list, which details both plants and animals that have exceptional eating qualities not found in much/most of today's commercially available foods.  We've personally taste tested Red Wattle pork against a more typical commercial crossbred hog that we raised here on the farm for meat. The two animals were raised side by side, eating the same things, living the same healthy lifestyle. They were even butchered and processed the exact same way. Without a doubt the crossbred hog was much better then store bought pork. But even better then the home raised crossbred was the home raised Red Wattle. Cooked the same way while I was out of the house (feeding animals), I can pick out the Red Wattle each and every time. It is that good!!  

In addition to exceptional eating qualities, we wanted a hog that fit into our lifestyle and was easy to work around. The Red Wattles have proven to be a gentle breed of hog that is people friendly and easy to handle. We pasture raise all of our animals and they are rarely confined, and so our hogs had to be good foragers with hardy constitutions. Red Wattles fit the bill! Additionally our hogs had to be good mothers, able to birth and care of their young without a bunch of coddling and worry. Our sows have proven to be careful, attentive mothers that rarely need interventions when birthing or caring for their young.

 

 

Our Red Wattle Hogs

We started out with just 3 little Red Wattle weaners from a farm in Missouri. Those 3 quickly gained the company of 2 mature sows that came to us already bred. After  just 3 years, our breeding herd expanded to 16 sows and 7 boars.  This group of Red Wattles comes from 4 distinct genetic lines.*  Our goal has always been to have a diverse genetic base here on the farm, both for the overall preservation of the breed, but also so that we are able to provide new breeders with great start up pairs. While  with most livestock animals it is accepted practice to get one half of a breeding pair from one farm and the other half from a different farm, Red Wattles are spread so far and wide that it might be hard to ship in hogs from all over the place in order to put together nice pairings. Many folks just starting out in Red Wattles want to get both halves of their genetics from one farm. Its just easier that way.   To that end we have made it a priority to find and "import" to Oregon additional Red Wattle hogs from genetic lines not commonly found in circulation.  In spring of 2010 we found the rarest of the rare  Red Wattle genetics and made arrangements to bring them to Oregon.

*Heritage Farms Northwest is beyond pleased to announce the arrival of "The Andrus Hogs" as we call them.  July 2010 saw us welcoming tired travelers from Indianapolis. Brian and Dot Jordon (2010 Red Wattle Association President and Secretary) drove out to Oregon to deliver to us a trailer carrying 4 mature Red Wattle Hogs. Three of the hogs had been bought by the Jordan's just a year or two ago from a long time Red Wattle breeder by the name of Ronnie Andrus. He had kept his line of Red Wattles isolated on his farm in Louisiana for years and years. Every so often he would swap a boar piglet with another long time Red Wattle breeder by the name of Elvis Kirsch. Over the years, this group of hogs thrived and persevered as one of the purest repository of  Red Wattle genes to be found.  When Mr. Andrus was no longer able to care for his hogs, he contacted the RWA and offered to sell the hogs to the Jordan's who then drove the long distance to bring those special hogs home to their farm. Around this time the Jordan's also bought a sow from Bud Nichols that he had gotten from Elvis Kirsch.  Again, this sow was from some of the original old Red Wattle genetics and is considered to be one of the purest "Wengler" hogs in existence.  When Brian decided to pursue his dream of becoming a vet, he offered this group of hogs for sale. We thought it a long shot that they were still available and thought it even more of a long shot that we would be able to figure out how to transport 4 grown hogs across the country in the middle of summer time, but I sent the email asking about them anyway. Fate was with us, as was the overwhelming generosity of the Jordan's. Yes the hogs were available and they would even make it a family vacation and drive the herd out to us personally as no one really wanted to put such rare animals on a commercial truck and hope nothing went wrong. What a fabulous bit of fortune. The 4 hogs have arrived and settled in to their new home very nicely. They are their own small herd of 3 sows (Slim, Jenna, and Star) and one boar (Homer). We are enjoying getting to know them and are looking forward to their future litters.


It is our goal to produce the best Red Wattle hogs possible. We are very selective in what we consider to be breeding stock so as to ensure that the breed continues to grow and thrive with only the top individuals reproducing.  Gilts are evaluated for such things as temperament, conformation, teat count, reproductive traits as well as other qualities.  Boars are also subjected to stringent quality control. Conformation, temperament and yes, even teat count are all part of the equation when it comes to picking a suitable breeding boar.

As of 2013 we no longer sell breeding stock piglets.

If your looking for a Red Wattle meat hog or Red Wattle  pork, you've come to the right place. We sell  finished pork by the side, weaner pigs, BBQ pigs, and even USDA individual cuts of pork. If you're a chef, restaurant owner,  or grocer and are interested in Red Wattles for your business, please drop us a note and we will work to provide you with what you need.

 

Please see our sales page to see what we have available. If you don't see what you're looking for, please contact us. We may have what you need, though it might not be listed on the website.

As of 2013 we no longer sell breeding stock piglets.

 

 


Heritage Farms Northwest
Jim and Wendy Parker
(503) 606-9883
Dallas, Oregon

info@heritagefarmsnw.com

last updated July 22, 2013

copywrite 2013 Heritage Farms Northwest
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No photos may be used without the expressed permission of Heritage Farms Northwest
 

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